Chicago

Judge denies bond for suspect charged in Red Line bottle attack, orders him to stay off CTA

CHICAGO (CBS) — Bond was denied Friday for a man charged in a brutal attack on the CTA Red Line over the weekend.

We have been tracking the brutal attack since it happened. On Thursday, police announced the arrest of Solomon Washington, 30, of Chicago Heights in connection with the attack.

Police said Washington is the man seen on a viral video smashing a glass bottle over another man’s head on a Red Line train near the terminal at 95th Street and the Dan Ryan Expressway.

As CBS 2’s Tara Molina reported Friday, it turns out Washington has a long rap sheet – totaling 29 cases that span from 2009 up to just this past summer. But this was the first time Washington was charged with a felony.

The brutal attack this past Saturday night was caught on video, from a CTA passenger, which police used to track down Washington in south suburban Glenwood.

A Cook County assistant state’s attorney said at Washington’s bond hearing that the victim – a 44-year-old man – had been asleep on the train. Once he woke up, he was approached by two people – one of whom was Washington – and they started going through his pocket, prosecutors said.

Authorities said at one point, Solomon struck the victim in the head with a glass bottle, eventually stealing his money.

The victim was left sitting on the Red Line train bleeding.

Just one day later Sunday, in an incident for which we don’t have video, police say Washington punched a man in the face and robbed him – also on Chicago Transit Authority property.

In that case, prosecutors said the victim was also asleep – and surveillance video caught Washington going through the man’s pockets while the man was sleeping. The man woke up and noticed the train had stopped and he waws missing his belongings, at which point he confronted the defendant, prosecutors said.

Washington now faces felony charges of armed robbery, aggravated battery, robbery, and theft.

And while we found he’s no stranger to police, this, again, is his first felony case.

All other charges against Washington were either dismissed, dropped, or lowered to misdemeanors. Washington has served brief stints in jail, but has never gone to prison.

While Washington was denied bond, some special conditions were also set for his bond moving forward. As was the case with another man charged with felony crimes earlier this week, the special conditions for Washington included orders not to contact victims or witnesses, and not to go onto CTA property.

But police and CTA personnel aren’t enforcing special conditions, preventing people from using the CTA. So Molina asked CBS 2 Legal Analyst Irv Miller what such bond conditions really mean – especially in a case involving a repeat offender.

Miller said there is “no coordination.”

Molina: “If someone’s found to violate the special condition, they go on the CTA and they’re caught either via electronic monitoring and GPS, or they commit another crime on the CTA, there are some more serious penalties there?”

Miller: “They will probably be locked up 0 either with a very high bond or a no-bond – and that bond will stay typically on him or her until the case goes to trial, which, as you know, could be months or years.”

Police are still looking for the second person seen in the video with Washington. Anyone who recognizes that person is asked to call Chicago police.

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